“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page.” This is a quote I strongly believe in. Every time a travel opportunity pops up, I jump at it. Every traveling opportunity is a great learning experience. My trip to Bad Königshofen, Germany with the Arlington, Texas Sister City delegation in October 2011 was just that, not only was it a learning experience, but it was a chance for me to meet wonderful people that I would like to keep in contact with for as long as I possibly can.
I was extremely lucky to experience all of this with my good friends, Marissa and Ryder. I do not think it would be as fun as it was without them. Overcoming the language barrier was extremely difficult, but we got through it together. I was truly thankful for them.
As we arrived at the Frankfurt Airport, we were greeted with a huge procession of friendly people. It was very refreshing to see their bright, cheery faces after a ten hour flight. From the airport, we went to a castle. I loved seeing all the history that flowed throughout the rooms. Within the first couple of hours I was in Germany, I had already learned so much.
After we left the castle, we went wine tasting. In the winery, we got to see huge wine barrels that were over a hundred years old. Near the winery was a restaurant, like many places in Germany, it was in walking distance. I was afraid to take a risk with the food, so I played it safe with a salad. To my surprise, it was extremely good.
After lunch, we were on our way to Bad Königshofen, Arlington’s sister city. Once we arrived in Bad Königshofen, we were taken to our host families. Marissa and I stayed with the same host family. The Bauer family was very welcoming and understanding. Even though they were not fluent in English, they tried their best. I still keep in contact with them today, they plan on visiting me this September.
One of the best bonding moments we had was at a bonfire party. Ryder and our new friends set up a fire and we all enjoyed the beauty of the outdoors. Marissa, Ryder, and I taught our German friends how to make S’mores and they roasted us sausages. We talked until sunrise.
A few days after, we went shopping! It was very interesting to see all the different styles of clothing. One of the best things I ate in Germany was their chocolate! I liked it so much that my host family bought me some to take back to America.
On the fourth day, Marissa and I went to a mineral spa. It was an experience that I will never forget. There is nothing like it here in America. It was one of the days that we just got to goof off with our new friends.
The days flew by so quickly. I did not want to leave. On the last day, we woke up early to catch the bus to the airport. Traffic in Germany was extremely bad; it took us three hours to get to the airport. Saying goodbye to my new friends was really hard, we had become very close within the course of five days.
My experience in Germany was very educational. I learned many things that I could never learn in America. I also went to many exciting places. I hope return soon to see my host family and the friends I have made in Germany.
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